What are the warning signs of a potential affair?
and how do affairs begin?
There are often signs beforehand that a woman is heading into an affair.
Every affair begins somewhere. They all have a fairly predictable start.
After an affair is over, many women will say they ‘don’t understand how they could be have allowed themselves to be unfaithful’
and they’re often confused about how they got into the situation in the first place.
Yet, there are always signs to look for.
1. The foundation is always set and the conditions are ripe before an affair even starts.
Those conditions can be as innocent as discontentment or unhappiness within a woman’s heart and life. The condition of her heart could be cold toward her husband and perhaps small resentments have built up. Left unchecked and not talked about, resentments are seeds that can grow into displeasure and a desire to find happiness in someone else.
Perhaps there has not been any real connection in her marriage and time has slipped away with the responsibilities of work, children and financial obligations. The foundation of communication that exists in a good, thriving marriage may be lacking. Has it been months and months before any real date night? Has life become so busy they are lacking any real intimacy or depth of conversation? This void creates a vacuum that a wife will seek to fill somehow.
If a marriage continues without connection, temptation to stray may present itself and a woman who would otherwise never consider infidelity may be more tempted during this vulnerable time.
To read more in detail the reasons why women have affairs, click here.
2. The opportunities present themselves with another man; filling her emotional needs.
- a male coworker who seems to give attention the woman is craving.
- It could be a male friend of hers, or someone she’s known a long time.
- An old romantic flame rekindling after connecting on social media or in person.
- A friend of the family, or her husbands.
- Someone from their church.
- It doesn’t really matter “who” he is, but for the fact that for some reason, this man has sparked her attention and is filling a void she has in her life.
Speaking with him has awakened a desire in her that has not been there for a long time. It starts innocently enough, perhaps being just friends and talking about platonic things. Yet, if she is not careful she will find herself inching closer to infidelity.
3. Warning signs that a woman is flirting with the dangers of infidelity, even if she is oblivious to it at first:
- She finds herself wanting to be this other man more, and finds excuses to manipulate her schedule and situations to allow them to spend more time together.
- Her thoughts are more preoccupied with thinking about him and other family obligations are pushed aside, even if she is the only one who notices this at first.
- She becomes more interested in her appearance and will take more time to get ready and dolled up when she knows she will be seeing him.
- She may lose weight or get a new haircut or clothes to be more attractive.
- Wondering whether this other man is attracted to her will start to invade her thoughts more.
- She will justify to herself and anyone who questions her behavior that they are “just friends” and nothing more.
- She may find herself getting excited to see texts, emails or calls from him. If these become more frequent, she will attempt to hide the frequency and down play her feelings for him.
- She may begin to hide her phone or social media contact with him.
- Boundaries of time spent alone with another man become blurred and disregarded more often.
- The conversations with another man has become personal about his marriage or hers. Discussing problems or personal issues that would normally have been off limits are shared.
There are always at least a few of these signs before a physical affair begins.
4. But what about an emotional affair?
- Wikipedia defines an emotional affair as “an affair between two people that mimics the closeness and emotional intimacy of an affair while never being physically consummated”.
- I usually say, if you have to hide ANYTHING about your relationship with this other person, than you’re likely in an emotional affair.
(that means, emails, the amount of phone calls, working with them for longer after hours than others etc…) Basically, ANY type of conversation or interaction that you feel
you need to hide from your spouse is dangerous territory.
- Emotional affairs can be just as devastating as a physical affair.
It often occurs because the two are deceived into believing they did nothing wrong since ‘there was no sex’.
That’s where the danger starts.
- Yet, many physical affairs started out as ’emotional connections’. This other person seems to understand us.
They value our opinions and we feel needed and desired again. That can easily set the stage for a physical affair to transpire later. It is only a matter of time before it does.
- Women will continue to tell themselves, and others, that they are ‘just friends.’ Have you heard that one from your spouse? Or, have you said it yourself?
However, if we were to be honest, we’d often admit it has become more.
These are all some of the warning signs that a woman is heading into an affair if she does not take action and change her behavior.
5. The turning point for a woman heading toward an affair.
At this point a woman will face a turning point in her friendship with another man.
Either she’ll heed the warning around her that she’s gotten too emotionally close, and preoccupied, with another man;
or she will make the unfortunate decision to let him know how she feels. I did the second choice. Don’t be like me.
If she heeds the warning signs all around her, and realizes she is heading into an affair,
she’ll keep herself from following the painful trap that so many women have found themselves in.
BUT, She’ll need to take very drastic steps to keep the relationship from becoming an affair.
If that ‘she’ is you, be very careful and be willing to even take drastic measures to cut off contact
with this ‘friend’ or coworker. Trust me, it too easily can turn into something else right when you’re thinking
you’d never do that.
6. How can a woman change course, if she suspects she’s headed toward an affair?
I’ll speak directly to you now, if you are that woman I’ve been talking about.
Take it from someone who didn’t heed the warnings, turn back now. You’d be wise to do the following:
- Let the man know you’re uncomfortable with how close their friendship is, and discontinue contact with him.
- Be careful, sometimes expressing your awareness of the friendship becoming too close, can turn the friendship into an affair.
If you know you’re not strong enough to keep that from happening, cut off communication, and all contact with the other man.
You might have feelings of guilt, but just resolve to protect your marriage, and your husband, from being destroyed by a potential affair.
- Close out any email he’s used to contact you. Block his number, and even change jobs, if seeing him daily is inevitable and tempting for you.
These will feel drastic and extreme to you at first. you might wrestle with feelings of guilt over hurting his feelings, and not being nice.
However, if you’re a woman who recognizes ANY of these warning signs, be resolute in your commitment to your marriage.
Make no mistake, any relationship that continues with the opposite sex after these warning signs are observed,
will very likely end in a devastating and heartbreaking affair.
It is easier to break off a friendship with another man now, than a full fledged affair later, when you’re marriage is broken, and your reputation is shot.
Continue to read about after an affair has started. Stage 2- in the midst of an affair, click here.
What happens after an affair has started and the likely progression the affair will follow.
To read general stages of affairs and how the process usually goes, click here.
Where are within this list? Do you think you might be venturing too close to the edge of having an affair?
Feel free to email me if you want to chat [email protected]
Meanwhile, be sure to get our exclusive magazine “Breaking Free for women”. It’s packed with 14 pages of articles and information to help you
on your journey with affair recovery or even recognizing more about what affairs are made of. Opt in on the pop up here or on header of the home page.
Read blog post just for Unfaithful Wives here.